As part of the SWITCH Africa Green Programme (an initiative funded by the European Union, and implemented by the UNDP; UNOPS; and UNEP), work is being carried out on a South African based project with a core focus on SECP (Sustainable Energy Consumption and Production), a term coined by REEEP.
The project seeks to assist MSMEs and eco-entrepreneurs in the agricultural and waste management sectors transition into the green economy. A shift toward Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP) practices and patterns will be promoted through establishing a stakeholder platform and providing a series of capacity building and training workshops.
The project’s integrated baseline report on the agricultural and waste management sectors concluded that South African agricultural sector is yet to achieve a high level of penetration of renewable energy and energy efficient technologies. The study identified many gaps that will need to be addressed in order to develop an enabling environment and stimulate the adoption of SECP practices in the agricultural sector.
REEEP's Nicole Algio, the regional secretariat manager for Southern Africa, and Jason Schäffler, the SWITCH Africa Green REEEP project manager, conducted training for emerging farmers in the Free State on 14 September 2016. This was the first training workshop to be held, and it offered valuable information and guidance to the farmers on Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency for their businesses. The training was well received with participants requesting a longer follow-up training session in order to explore new businesses opportunities in the RE and EE sectors, as well as to further their knowledge on SCP.
“Agriculture is the backbone to eliminating poverty,” said Ms Algio, speaking of strengthening agro-business and providing an opportunity for resource efficiency and cleaner production. “Adaptation measures and the smart use of RE and EE in farming practice are the key to supporting emerging and small to medium sized farming enterprises.”
The project will be running from November 2015 until end of October 2017, and you can find more information at http://www.reeep.org/switch-africa-green.